Ferrari team principal Maurizio Arrivabene has praised his departing driver Kimi Raikkonen for staying professional despite the bad news of him having to leave the team at the end of the season, as he gets replaced by Charles Leclerc.
Raikkonen will go back to the team where he made his debut in F1 back in 2001; Sauber. He will team up with rookie and Ferrari junior Antonio Giovinazzi at the Swiss-Italian team and signed a contract for two years, keeping him there until the end of 2020.
Arrivabene explained that the 2007 champion wanted to know in advance if things were going to change for next season. The Italian decided to tell the Iceman about Leclerc at Monza.
"Kimi is a great professional and it was a pleasure working with him these past years," Arrivabene told Gazzetta dello Sport.
"He told us to warn him with time if there were other plans for 2019.
"We decided to announce the signing of Leclerc before Monza, a choice to let a very talented driver grow next to a champion like Sebastian Vettel."
Arrivabene then praised the Finn for his professionalism in Monza, where he took pole position and almost won his first race in over five years, as he took things well despite the bad news.
"Raikkonen will drive two more years at Sauber, while he couldn't have gone further than 2019 with us.
"Despite the news he drove like a great professional in Monza," the Italian concluded.